Become a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer in Virginia. Explore medical imaging education and career opportunities near you.
Diagnostic medical sonographers, also known as ultrasound technicians, capture images of the inside of the body using a device that passes sound waves through muscle and tissue. Physicians use these images to prevent, diagnose, and treat disease and injuries, as well as monitor a woman’s pregnancy.
The field of medical sonography is growing at a rapid pace. In 2016, Virginia had over 1,600 working sonographers, and employment is expected to increase by 24% by 2026.
Pursuing your ultrasound tech degree in Virginia will help prepare you for a career in this growing field. Below you will find a complete list of the accredited sonography programs in the state. You’ll also learn what Virginia’s certification requirements are, and how much sonographers earn. Request information from schools listed below, ask questions, and be sure they have the programs and certifications to meet your career goals. If a program is not available in your area, you might consider looking at related fields.
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CAAHEP Accredited Diagnostic Sonography Programs
Choosing which school to attend is a big decision with lasting consequences, and there is much to consider. One of the most important points is the accreditation of the program. In medical imaging, the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) is the one you want to look for. To receive accreditation from CAAHEP, schools have to meet the CAAHEP DMS Accreditation Standards and Guidelines by passing a series of program reviews, including a self-study review and a site visit.
The successful completion of one of these accredited Virginia DMS programs is the most comprehensive and direct way students can earn eligibility to sit for the ARDMS Sonography Principles & Instrumentation (SPI) examination.
Accredited Sonography Schools in Virginia in 2020
The following ultrasound technician schools in Virginia have degree or certificate programs that have been accredited by the CAAHEP as of October, 2020:
|School||Programs Offered||Prerequisites||How to Apply|
|Northern Virginia Community College
6699 Springfield Center Drive
Springfield, VA 22150
|A.A.S. in Diagnostic Medical Sonography||Certain prerequisite courses must be taken and passed with a grade of “B” or better.||Submit transcripts and apply online.|
|Piedmont Virginia Community College
501 College Drive
Charlottesville, VA 22902
|Associate of Applied Science in DMS||Completion of General Education courses is the main selection criteria.||Applications to the DMS department must be submitted by June 1 of each year.|
|Southside College of Health Sciences
430 Clairmont Ct, Suite 200
Colonial Heights, VA 23834
|A.A.S. in Diagnostic Medical Sonography||High school diploma and certain prerequisite courses.||Applications are submitted online and are accepted for both Fall and Spring quarters.|
|Tidewater Community College
1700 College Crescent
Virginia Beach, VA 23453
|Associate of Applied Science in DMS||Certain prerequisite courses must be taken and passed with a grade of “B” or better.||Applications must be submitted by May 15th for Fall admissions.|
|* This information is obtained from a number of sources, is provided without charge, and is believed to be accurate. Please contact us with updates.|
Ultrasound Technician Certification Requirements in Virginia
A state license is not required to practice sonography in Virginia. However, many employers do require professional certification by the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS).
How to Become Certified in Virginia
The only way to earn certification by the ARDMS is by taking and passing their exam. The most comprehensive way to receive sufficient training and prepare to sit for the exam is to graduate from a program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). Receiving your sonography degree or certificate from one of these accredited programs automatically meets one of the ARDMS’ prerequisites to take the exam.
There are many locations throughout Virginia to take the exam, and you can find them on the website for the administrator of the exam, Pearson Vue. In most cases, your school will help you coordinate the test.
Additional Certification Information
Here’s What the Experts Have to Say
Neal Kassell, M.D.
Neal F. Kassell, M.D, Distinguished Professor at the University of Virginia and founder and Chairman of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation, spoke with us in an interview about the foundation and the benefit that patients are seeing from Focused Ultrasound.
How Much do Ultrasound Techs Earn in Virginia?
Sonography is among the highest paying fields you can enter with just an Associate’s Degree.
- In Virginia, ultrasound technologists earned a mean annual salary of $76,940 in 2019. Conditions in your area may vary.
- 130 new sonography jobs are expected to open each year; a growth rate of 24%.
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Sonographers who work in outpatient care centers tend to earn the highest salary. Similarly, large metropolitan areas tend to pay more than smaller towns and rural areas. The following table compares salaries in different areas of the state; conditions in your area may vary.
|Metropolitan Area||2019 Median Salary|
|Virginia Beach, Norfolk||$72,340|
Ultrasound Technician Schools in Richmond, VA
Richmond has a lot to offer someone who’s looking to attend a medical imaging program. Bon Secours St. Mary’s Hospital School of Medical Imaging has certified programs for those interested in pursuing radiology or sonography, and there are several CAAHEP certified programs in the outlying area.
The median salary for diagnostic medical sonographers in Richmond was $74,010 in 2019. Job growth in a variety of allied health occupations is expected to be strong. There are many historical sites to tour in your spare time in Virginia, including the birthplace of George Washington in Mt. Vernon. If history isn’t your thing, gather your friends and visit the world’s only oyster museum on Chincoteague Island. Whatever you pleasure, graduating from an ultrasound technician school in Virginia will give you a great education combined with a positive economic outlook.